Our Journey

A whale of a time in California πŸ³

Ok, so since my last post we have had a pretty severe case of the Vegas blues, it’s hard not to really. The place is unbelievable , plus with the wedding, Mel’s birthday and friends and family being there we did just have an epic time in Vegas! So we have missed it.

However our Vegas blues quickly subsided once we started to explore California. I didn’t realise just how big it is. We started our trip with a visit to San Francisco.

San Francisco is awesome and there was plenty of places I was excited to see. We used Air B&B for our trip and stayed with a lovely guy called Anuj. The room we rented was lovely and he gave us some tips on places to stay.

We went off out to explore, the first thing that took me by surprise was the ground beneath me. I couldn’t believe how steep and uphill some off the roads were. It’s like you are in the mountains but this busy bustling city is just there in the middle of it all. It was so strange to see but really cool at the same time.

Lombard Street just so happened to be at the top of these steep roads so we trekked up there to get some pictures. It’s stunning the spirals roads and flowers. I can’t imagine what it must be like to be a resident on that road! It’s a must see if you are ever in San Francisco.

After viewing all the beautiful flowers we explored for a while and I came across a homeless man who reminded me of my Dad and had kind eyes, we passed him some change but then I ended up so upset all day. He was so frail and just sat there silently with his little cap out for change. The look in his eyes when I gave him some coins broke my heart and then I felt so bad it only amounted to about a dollar. I thought about him all day and hope he is ok. There is a massive problem with homelessness, world wide. It really upsets me and I wish I could do more to help πŸ’•

We ate some brunch then we went for a stroll down the Pier in afternoon and went into the the museum to learn about all the boats, went into the place with all the retro Arcade games and then to Pier 39 to see the sea lions!

It was great to see them all there barking away. They are a noisy bunch, they also stink but they are the funniest little animals around. Such character. Mel and I liked one in particular who was rather rotund and just slobbing about near the back half on half off the deck.

We loved spending the day in San Francisco, it has so much to offer and was a refreshing change to the heat we had had in Vegas. I wore a hoody my whole time there. I did say to Mel that I wasn’t as impressed as I was in Vegas because it looked a bit messy and not as well put together, this was when Mel reminded me that this was real life and Vegas is artificial life! It’s true, I just have rose tinted glasses for Vegas now ha!

We had pre booked some tickets to see a Baseball Game while we were there and I had found a stall selling clothes for $1 that afternoon and it was selling a San Francisco shirt sporting the San Francisco Giants colours!

We set off to AT&T Stadium, the atmosphere was great. We had pre game drinks at the bar and loved seeing everyone in their bright orange outfits for The Giants. We got snacks, had a great view and enjoyed trying to figure out what goes on in baseball, we got lucky as The SFGiants won 8-0!

The game itself was great but these games are so much fun and a lot of it is for the crowd. The T-shirt tossing, all the chants and kiss Cam… we didn’t get on kiss cam and I was sad but it’s just a great atmosphere all around and we just so happened to be there on a night that was ending with a firework display! I must say we have been very lucky so far with all the cool things we have just so happened to be there at the right time for!

We loved he game and are now not only baseball Fans but SFGiants fans to!

It was in San Francisco we decided to backpack our way through California. It was just too expensive to buy bikes for the sake of a few weeks so we set out in search of cheap backpacks, so far we have one but we are making do. It’s an old school one that we found on Craigslist.

With our first day in San Francisco being so busy we only got a glimpse of The Golden Gate Bridge as well as Alcatraz. A glimpse is all we did get of Alcatraz as we didn’t book in time for cheaper tickets but on day two of our San Fransisco stay we went to Golden Gate Park. The park itself was lovely and hosts a variety of things to see and do. We went to all the free parts of the museum and ended up in a family art project. Making blueprints.

I loved seeing Mel get creative and it was a lovely thing for us to do together and he is actually really good at drawing. Especially in the straight and symmetrical way the blue prints are drawn. Mine was all over the place as I’m all about twirls and swirls.

After the museum we went to see the iconic bridge and I was sad at first because it was foggy but when we got closer it actually look so cool in the mist and the fog and I got some lovely photos. We walked about a quarter of the way down and got a better view of Alcatraz before deciding that was enough and we headed back for an early night as we had lots of planning to do.

We did some planning that evening about what we would do next, we sent out some couch surfing requests, we got verified on www.couchsurfing.com as we don’t have our bikes with us anymore for www.warmshowers.org and got a response for Salinas, near Monterey Bay. So set off the next morning using the Greyhound bus for the first time.

We got to our destination and our first Couchsurfing experience together and again, we had struck lucky. Eloisa our host had a beautiful apartment in a gated community in a great area. She was away traveling at the time but her lovely cousin greeted us and then we barely saw him. So we had this great apartment to ourselves for the whole time, equipped with a pool, jacuzzi and tennis courts if we wanted to use them. Eloisa seemed great even though we didn’t get to meet her, she txt all the time telling us to make ourselves at home, how the washing machine worked and what the WiFi password was. All I can say is a hope I get to meet her one day! She even had two cats that somehow didn’t make me sneezy!!

It was about two hours on the bus to Monterey Bay from the apartment, the bus was free on the first day as it was a holiday so that was a bonus. There was also a very clever man on the bus talking about everything from the pyramids to mathematicians and Mel and I sat and enjoyed the free live podcast! A man asked him how he knew so much his response ‘I read a lot, I also smoke a lot of weed but I read a lot’ a phrase we would hear a lot in California!

Our first day there we just did some exploring, got a drink at happy hour and walked along Pebble Beach. We also tested out the selfie stick πŸ‘ŒπŸΌ it’s a gorgeous place with lots to do. We came a cross a man with lots of exciting birds so I jumped at the chance to hold one.

We had a really lovely day, it ended with a giant pizza before going home to plan for our last day here because we wanted to go whale watching.

We got up early to get to Monterey Bay the next day and went straight to book our tickets for whale watching. It’s something we have both been excited about for a while and we planned to do it for my birthday but our plans have changed a bit since then so got here earlier.

The trip was fantastic from start to finish! The first good thing to happen was the guy who came and sat next to us who said ‘My sons are bothering me, may I sit here’ he then went on to introduce himself, his name was Sam. We loved Sam! He chatted away, offered us a beer, the guy had a beer cooler on wheels with him πŸ˜‚ he loved mine and Mel’s wedding story and said we look like we are meant to be together.

He then chatted to us about weed in California before getting out a pipe and offering us some weed, we declined but said we didn’t mind him doing it by us. Sam was the best, he had us laughing through out the trip, one time we had gone over to the other side of the boat for a sighting and he appeared next to Mel and before we had even seen him shouted ‘ Aren’t we having the best time’ Mel nearly fell overboard and we both jumped out our skin. Then laughed for ages!

The whale watching itself was unbelievable. We had such a great day and got so lucky with what we saw. 2 blue whales, very rare to see. 12 humpbacks and all coming so close. 26 dolphins riding the waves right beside us. It was magical and we both loved it.

It was actually Sam who spotted the blue whale, unintentionally, we think he was just being funny, he was so stoned shouting, whale at 12 o clock but then that’s where the first sighting of the blue whale actually was. It was amazing to see. Mel and I stood together watching the blue whales go up and down and then we heard Sams voice from somewhere saying ‘so majestic’ and we were howling!

We got some great shots and videos of all the action but unfortunately none of Sam πŸ˜‚

But it was a truly beautiful and Memorable day that we loved πŸ’™

So after a great week we are again on a greyhound bus heading for Santa Barbara where we have another host for the time we are there. It’s been amazing since the wedding and what a honeymoon to be on πŸ’•

It’s nice to try the backpacking way of life as well so we get to experience it all.

We have a lot of research tonight to do for LA and then off to Japan! So excited!!!

Until next week 🐳

πŸ’•

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